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Woodie's Celebrates 30th Anniversary With Strong Revenue and Profit Growth

Woodie's DIY SC 725 x 500

Grafton Group plc has reported its final results for the year ended 31 December 2018, advising of "excellent progress towards medium-term financial targets".

Woodie's - the clear market leader in the DIY, Home and Garden market in Ireland - celebrated the 30th anniversary of the opening of its first store with an exceptional level of organic growth in revenue and profitability, including a strong performance from seasonal ranges in the summer months.  

Grafton Group Retail Segment Results

 

2018

£'m

2017

£'m

Actual Change

Constant Currency Change

Revenue

198.2

180.4

+9.9%

+8.8%

Operating profit

16.8

11.2

+50.1%

+48.7%

8.5%

6.2%

+230bps

 

2018 was the third consecutive year of strong growth in revenue and profitability as Woodie's continued to build a sustainable business for the long term while also laying the foundations for further growth.  The positive outcome for the year was driven by good market fundamentals and the benefit of the business transformation programme and investment in branches undertaken in recent years. 

The pace of growth in retail spending was strong supported by broadly based growth in employment, income and consumer spending. 

Woodie's improved its leadership position in the Irish DIY, Home and Garden market growing like-for-like revenue by 8.8 per cent with the number of transactions up by 4.1 per cent to 8.3 million and average transaction values 4.7 per cent higher in response to new and extended product ranges. 

After a first half that was influenced by extremes of weather, trading patterns were more even in the second half and the business finished the year on a strong note with very good growth in the Christmas category driven by range innovation, availability, great value and service. 

Improvements to Woodie's website and order fulfilment delivered sustainable online revenue growth of 70 per cent from a low base with significant potential for future growth.

The branch modernisation programme is now at an advanced stage.  Seven stores were upgraded during the year and 85 per cent of retail space is now in the new trading format.  This has provided a modern and more exciting shopping experience by changing the layout of how products are categorised and merchandised. 

Woodie's continued to invest in colleagues to ensure that the business meets customers' expectations for great service with 170 colleagues graduating under the "Our Seeds for Success" programme and the business improving its Great Place to Work ranking for the third successive year. 

Operating profit grew by 50.1 per cent and the operating profit margin increased by 230bps to 8.5 per cent.  This follows growth of 150bps in the prior year and was driven by revenue growth, an increase in the gross margin, from an improved product mix, lower promotional activity and tight control of overheads.

Gavin Slark, Chief Executive Officer commented:    

"2018 was another year of strong delivery against our medium-term targets achieved through a combination of organic and acquisition led initiatives.  Grafton continues to benefit from exposure to the fast growing Irish and Dutch markets and from strong underlying demand fundamentals in the UK market. The Group's excellent cash generation from operations, good liquidity and strong balance sheet should continue to support the development of the business."

Source : Grafton Group Plc

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28 February 2019

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